The USDA at Byron, GA has released a trio of “Joy” peach cultivars named ‘Crimson Joy’ (early mid-season), ‘Liberty Joy’ (mid-season), and ‘Rich Joy’ (late season). The three main-season cultivars all have self-fertile showy pink flowers, produce large, firm, melting and freestone fruit with high blush, yellow flesh, normal acidity and pleasant eating quality, and crop well most years at tested locations in the southeast. The cultivars are suited for trials in areas with medium to high chilling accumulation.

‘Crimson Joy’ requires ~700 chill hours (CH) and typically ripens approximately with ‘Harvester’ and ‘Redhaven’ and about a week after ‘GaLa’ in mid to late June at Byron. The fruit are redder, more attractive, and firmer than the three cultivars in the similar harvest window.

‘Liberty Joy’ requires ~650 CH and typically ripens in late June to early July at Byron. It could be a reliable lower-chill alternative to ‘Fireprince’, ‘Blazeprince’, ‘Scarletprince’ and ‘Redglobe’, some current commercial cultivars in the harvest window that all require ~850 CH and do not crop well when chilling accumulation is insufficient.

‘Rich Joy’ requires ~850 CH and typically ripens about a week after ‘Julyprince’ and approximately 2 weeks before ‘Flameprince’ at Byron, which can fill the harvest gap between the two cultivars. At maturity, ‘Rich Joy’ fruit have high percentage of bright red blush, making it more attractive and preferable to older, less blushed ‘Cresthaven’ and ‘Early Augustprince’, which are in the same harvest window. The freestone fruit develop excellent melting texture and pleasant rich flavor, and soften slowly on the tree as they ripen, allowing them to be picked over a relatively longer period compared to other typical melting cultivars.

The pedigrees of the three cultivars are different, so are their chill requirements, ripening days relative to ‘Elberta’, and harvesting seasons (Table 1).

Table 1 Chill requirements (hours), ripening days relative to ‘Elberta’ and harvesting seasons

CultivarsChill HoursRipening DaysHarvesting Seasons
Redhaven950-28Early mid
Harvester750-26Early mid
Crimson Joy700-25Early mid
Liberty Joy650-15Mid
Rich Joy8502Late
Early Augustprince8003Late

Prospective licensees may contact USDA, ARS, Office of Technology Transfer at 5601 Sunnyside Ave, Room 4-1192, Beltsville, MD 20705-5131, USA or via

Posted in: